Unlike Tom and Jan, unfortunately we have time constraints attached to our cruise, with a 60th birthday party to attend at the end of the month. As such we have a schedule, and as a result of a good day's cruising today, we are back on it.
We departed our Gailey mooring around 7.00am and managed to get off while the rest were still thinking about it, in particular the hotel boats who we passed still moored in Penkridge after their overnight stay.
We have passed through some really pleasant places on our way, with some beautiful canal side properties and rural countryside. However the condition of the canal has room for improvement in places with passage narrowed by weed, and quite shallow in places.
We passed two 'Black Prince' hire boats who were travelling together. The flags displayed from the stern indicate that they are Australian visitors enjoying a holiday on the canal.
We have managed all the way to Tixall Wide for our overnight mooring, arriving here about 2.30pm. When the canal was built, in 1771, the landowner whose land it would cross insisted that it be landscaped to have the appearance of an ornamental lake to be in keeping with the rest of the gardens that were designed by Lancelot 'Capability' Brown. I believe they succeeded.
Margaret has gone for the short walk to Great Haywood for a look around. This is the location of the junction with the Trent and Mersey Canal, which we will join tomorrow for the next stage of our cruise.